Trace of Evil

Trace of Evil : A Natalie Lockhart Novel

3.76 (1,814 ratings by Goodreads)
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3.76 (1,814 ratings by Goodreads)
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Natalie Lockhart always knew she was going to be a cop. A rookie detective in Burning Lake, a town known for its dark past, she was raised on the wisdom of her chief-of-police father. Natalie uses these lessons and the scars of her past - a beloved sister, murdered as a teenager - to give families the closure she never got. Her task is to uncover the whereabouts of nine missing transients who have disappeared. One night, after a day of no leads, she offers a ride home to a fellow cop. What she sees next will unravel everything.

Daisy Bruckner - beloved schoolteacher, wife to a cop, pregnant - is dead on her kitchen floor. A suspect almost comes to mind immediately - Riley Skinner, Daisy's student and one of the disenfranchised youths of Burning Lake. But it's not that simple. Riley is in a coma, collapsed only hours after her death. And Daisy had secrets of her own.

Natalie knows there is more to this case, but as the investigation deepens, even she cannot predict the far-reaching consequences - for Daisy, for Burning Lake - and for herself. As the hunt for Daisy's killer ties in with the loose thread of her sister's murder, Natalie must use every skill she possesses to solve the crimes before her - and confront the darkest parts of herself.

Spellbinding and haunting, Trace of Evil is a dazzling novel of twisting suspense and the effect of secrets left uncovered.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 384 pages
  • 243 x 164 x 36mm | 567g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1250205719
  • 9781250205711
  • 2,116,319

Review quote

A fast-paced, intricate, and atmospheric mystery that introduces a plucky, engaging detective. - Kirkus Review

Flush with red herrings, Wiccan symbols, and disaffected teens, this book will appeal to fans of criminal investigations led by empowered women. - Publishers Weekly

What seems an open-and-shut case becomes much more, with Blanchard carefully peeling away layers of history and deception before pulling off a shocking twist. Lockhart is a relatable new heroine on the police-procedural scene, and one who will appeal to readers of Tana French. - Booklist

A powerful and unexpected denouement. I look forward to reading more in the series. - bestselling author Ann Cleeves

[A] tense, nail-biter of a thriller! - J.D. Barker, International Bestselling Author of The Fourth Monkey

"Alice Blanchard seems to be able to write just about anything she wants [and] shows off a veteran storyteller at the peak of her powers." - New York Times bestselling author Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of Two If By Sea and The Deep End of the Ocean

"A tantalizing mystery with just the right amount of unsettling horror woven in." Neal Griffin, LA Times best-selling author of the Newberg series

"Layered with old wounds, new secrets, and tension that starts on the first page and never lets up." --Kristen Lepionka, Shamus Award-winning author of the Roxane Wearymystery series

"Moody and atmospheric [...] the kind of tale that lingers long after you've raced through its twists and turns to the utterly gripping finale. - Owen Laukkanen, award-winning author of the Stevens & Windermere novels

"Trace of Evil is riveting--atmospheric and dark, exploring modern day witchcraft and covens, with enough twists and turns to keep the most astute reader guessing until the end. Blanchard is a master storyteller with a brilliant understanding of family--about the love that both binds us and tears us apart. Get ready for a great read!" - Tricia Fields, author of the Josie Gray Mysteries

"[A] complex and tense drama." - Trudy Nan Boyce, author of the Detective Sarah Alt series

[A] haunting, dark, and thrilling tale that will leave you breathless. - L.T. Vargus, bestselling author of Bad Blood and Dead End Girl

Everything feels as if set to explode. [Trace of Evil] holds the reader at the edge of his seat, flipping the pages to untangle the knot, and uncover the secrets." - Mike Omer, bestselling author of the Zoe Bentley mystery series

"[U]tterly compelling. You won't want to put it down." - Olivia Kiernan, author of The Killer in Me and Too Close to Breathe

Blanchard delivers a masterclass in guessing who is the most evil--and why." Rea Frey, author of Not Her Daughter

[A] compelling mystery that will hold readers spellbound. - Margaret Mizushima, author of the critically acclaimed Timber Creek K-9 mysteries

"[Trace of Evil] delivers a gut-punch of a twist readers won't see coming. This book is not to be missed!" --Sara Driscoll, author of the FBI K-9s series

"[A]n absolute must-read that will [...] leave you breathless." - Carol Wyer, author of the Detective Natalie Ward series

Trace of Evil is lyrical, dark, and twisted. I read late into the night and the final twist blew me away. - Ellison Cooper, author of Caged
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About Alice Blanchard

Alice Blanchard is an award-winning author. She has received a PEN Award, a New Letters Literary Award, a Centrum Artists-in-Residence Fellowship, and a Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction. Her debut novel, Darkness Peering, was a New York Times' Notable Book and a Barnes & Noble Best Mystery book. Her work has been published in 17 countries.
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Rating details

1,814 ratings
3.76 out of 5 stars
5 24% (430)
4 41% (742)
3 25% (459)
2 8% (143)
1 2% (40)
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